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Spousal Support Lawyers in Edmonton
Alberta

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SPOUSAL SUPPORT

Spousal Support Advisory Guidelines

Are you seeking Spousal Support lawyer in Edmonton, Alberta? 

Laws in Alberta [Canada] aka Spousal Support Advisory Guidelines include the age of both parties, the needs of the parties, the length of the marriage, the contribution each has made to the marriage including looking after children and the home, the value of any benefit of the marriage lost in a divorce, and the mental health of each spouse.

Why Do I Need To Know This?

Family law provides for spousal support. Either by court order or agreement, the SSAG principles along with legal advice (link to contact us) is a good starting point to guide your spousal support decisions.

Once you and your spouse have decided to separate and divorce, the process should be cut and dry, right?

Unfortunately, unless you’re filing for a simple divorce, it can get a little complicated. This is especially the case if one party is required to pay spousal support or child support as part of the settlement arrangements.

You’ve likely heard of child support (link), but what about the other term? Are you unsure what spousal support means or what it entails? That’s why Alberta Law Office is here.

Today, we’re breaking down this concept into manageable parts. We’ll also share information specific to Alberta residents, so you know exactly how to proceed.

 

What Is Spousal Support In Alberta?

First, let’s begin by answering a simple question: What exactly is spousal support?

In short, this is money paid by one spouse to another after a separation or divorce. In some instances, you might hear it referred to as adult independent support or alimony instead.

It’s important to understand that not every spouse is entitled to support, so therefore not every ex-spouse is required to pay spousal support. There are many factors that go into whether or not a spouse will receive this support, as well as how much support they will receive.

While this post will explain the basics of how this process works, it’s always best to team with a reputable family lawyer (our link) before moving forward with any decision. This way, you can make sure you’re following all of the right legal steps.

 

How Do Courts Decide Who Receives Spousal Support?

Canada’s Divorce Act (link to Divorce Act) sets the standards around spousal support orders for married couples.

 

Financial Imbalance

The number one factor that determines if one spouse must pay spousal support to the other? If a major gap exists between the income of one party and another, the one receiving the lower amount will often be eligible for support. However, this isn’t always the case. Sometimes, for one reason or another, the court will decide that the spouse with the lower income is ineligible for support.

The two factors that can influence this decision include:

  • If the lower-income spouse has a significant number of assets

  • If the differences in the two incomes are unrelated to anything that happened during the marriage

 

Other Factors For Consideration

In addition to financial differences, a judge will also base his or her spousal support ruling on a number of different factors. These include:

  • The financial requirements of each spouse

  • How long have you and your spouse been married

  • What roles you and your spouse take on during your marriage

  • If those roles and the dissolution of your marriage affected either spouse’s current financial state

  • How your children will be cared for (if applicable)

  • The likelihood of one spouse becoming self-sufficient after receiving support for a period of time

  • Any other support order or arrangements made about spousal support

In addition, it is to be considered how paying spousal support to the spouse with a lower income will affect that individual. Specific questions that arise include:

  • Will this support compensate the lower-income spouse for the power to earn income that he or she sacrificed during the marriage?

  • Will this support be enough for the lower-income spouse enough to cover the ongoing care of the children?

  • Does the other spouse have the financial means to pay this support if the other spouse requires it?

One factor that does not play into spousal support rulings? If one spouse cheated on the other. Canada has a no-fault divorce rule, which means that infidelity does not make one spouse obligated to provide financial support to another. The same applies to any reason that your marriage ended in divorce.

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